History

The Brownsover Hall Hotel has a long
and fascinating history
The hotel went through the Civil War, was pulled down and rebuilt again and welcomed the most different audiences. It gave home to the Ward-Boughton-Leigh family, hosted a department of the English Electric Company and inspired Sir Frank Whittle to create the jet engine. Read further and learn more about the history of these age-old walls!
The Whittle
Connection

One of the Hall’s most notable connections is that Sir Frank Whittle rented rooms here whilst working on his plans for the jet engine. Sir Whittle was born in Coventry in 1907 and joined the Royal Air Force in 1923 eventually becoming a Pilot Officer in 1928. In 1930 he applied for and was granted, a patent on a Turbo-jet engine. However the Air Ministry was not interested and Sir Whittle was unable to renew the patent, consequently, the details were published worldwide.

In 1936 he secured financial backing and with approval from the Air Ministry formed Power-Jets to develop the engine. It was during this time that he rented rooms here at Brownsover Hall as it was a convenient place to work, located between the BTH factory in Rugby and test facilities at Lutterworth.

When Power-jets was nationalised in 1946 Sir Whittle resigned and he retired from the RAF in 1948. He was knighted by King George VI in the same year. He moved to the USA in 1976 and died in August 1996 aged 89.